MORE than £25million records sold and eighteen studio albums - they're one of the most successful pop duos of the last thirty years.

But although society has changed in that time the appeal of Andy Bell and Vince Clarke clearly hasn't, judging by the love for this band at their Southampton gig.

Obviously thrilled to be on stage Andy was a delight in a black sequinned t shirt emblazoned - his two hip replacements clearly having no detrimental effect on his dance moves.

Chains In Love was the second song in and the first of the real crowd pleasers. Andy's backing singers were glorious in their flamboyance and the set was perfectly reminiscent of the best 90s gay clubs with neon strip lighting framing a higher platform for tech wizard Vince Clarke.

The end of Victim of Love saw Andy take a well-earned bow and a huge round of applause while Phantom Bride was also well received. Take Me Out of Myself was the most interesting of the new material - nicely mellow unlike the repetition of other new songs like I Love You To The Sky.

One of those covers that's better than the original came in the form of Blondie's Atomic and Stop! was a reminder of the duo's song-writing prowess - while Sometimes showed Andy's voice off to the max with some of the best lines in a pop dance track - "it's not my sense of emptiness you fill with your desire."

There's another bow at the end of Blue Savannah Song before Vince was brought to the front of the stage for the encore and huge cheers from the crowd.

Having arrived five minutes late I was terrified I'd missed the best Erasure track - but Respect was of course the last song of the night and a rip-roaring audience joined in with absolute glee.

There was lots of chat from Andy about his diet - it seems beetroot juice with four garlic cloves and the odd shot of whisky is doing wonders for him and his voice. He was friendly, warm and chatty, the perfect foil for Vince's poe-faced but genius persona.

All in all a fantastic show hitting all the right spots.